The Beauchamp Family by Melissa de la Cruz
Published between 2011-2013
So I was surprised to find that apparently there’s a TV show that is based off of this series but somehow I remember them being quite different. As in, other than the same characters and being “witches”, they were essentially completely different with a few plot overlaps. I’m not sure if this was done with the approval of the author, Melissa, but I do know that I was not particularly pleased to read the book and find out that the show as so different.
Also, first of all, they’re not even freaking witches. WTF. I don’t know why Melissa kept identifying them as witches when in reality; they were Norse gods and goddesses. Witches and goddesses are completely different. Melissa’s weird identification of her characters simply confused the heck out of me. She needs to figure out that they’re actually gods and goddesses rather than witches. In fact, they don’t even come from Earth but from this other realm.
Anyways, moving on with the characters. Let’s talk about Freya first mainly because she’s the easiest to talk about. She’s the youngest daughter of the Beauchamp family and she definitely shows it. She comes off as being impulsive and reckless. And being the goddess of love, she definitely showed that in all kinds of ways from the way how she dressed, her indecisiveness in choosing her lover (she had multiple ones), etc. Honestly, I don’t think I was particularly fond of her.
Ingrid, the eldest daughter, was your typical prude, bookish nerd. She was basically the epitome of that stereotype and that is so not a good thing. She had this on/off boyfriend, who was a cop, and god bless his soul but he was too good for her. Every time they took a step forward, Ingrid would freak out and then bring them back 5 steps. I’m not sure where he got his patience from but, he was way too good for her. I mean, she was nice and likeable and caring for her friends but in a way, she was just so dry. At least Freya brought some life in these books with her craziness.
Joanne, the mother, was not much better. Other than her obvious love for her children, she didn’t seem to have any good aspects. She kicked her husband out and then lied to her children for centuries that he was the one who walked out because he no longer loved them. What kind of mother and wife would even do that? It was mind boggling. At least she redeemed herself in the third book.
There are so many other characters to talk about – Freddie, Norman, Hudson, Killian, etc. that this review would go on forever if I mentioned them all. I wouldn’t consider them as the main characters but also they seemed more important than just the average secondary characters. Personally, I liked Hudson the best.
The writing was also another aspect that I didn’t enjoy mainly because I didn’t think that Melissa did a particularly good job in creating the background story. Because of the different pieces involved with these books, it was difficult for me to follow some of the character’s background especially the immortal ones because, obviously, they’re immortal and have a lot of history. I wish she did a better job in that regard.
I think the one redeeming quality of this series was the plot (other than the fact that this series is so different from the show). I liked the mystery, the intrigue, the fantasy, the romance, etc. There were a lot of layers in this series and it was interesting to read and uncover another layer.
Regardless, even despite the fact that I essentially complained in this entire review, I still enjoyed the series as a whole. It was interesting to see Melissa’s other books (the blue bloods) make an appearance in this series as well and see how even though this seemed like a completely different story, it was still in the same world as the rest of her other novels.